Reply-To-All Continues To Be Evil

18 Feb
February 18, 2009

Last month, this blog reported that the State Department ordered employees not to use the Reply-To-All button after an email storm brought the email servers to their knees.  Now, we learn that Nielsen has deployed a technological solution to block Reply-to-All.

"We have noticed that the “Reply to All” functionality results in
unnecessary inbox clutter. Beginning Thursday we will eliminate this
function, allowing you to reply only to the sender. Responders who want
to copy all can do so by selecting the names or using a distribution
list. Eliminating the “Reply to All” function will:

• Require us to copy only those who need to be involved in an e-mail conversation
• Reduce non-essential messages in mailboxes, freeing up our time as well as server space," said Andrew Cawood, Nielsen Chief Information Officer.

While the idea is right, companies are moving to a brute force method of solving the problem of too many emails causing information overload and potential security leaks.  Permessa Corporation has software that measures the number of recipients and the size of a message to see its impact.  This could solve the reply-to-all problem without preventing legitimate business activity.  (Disclosure: I have done marketing work for Permessa.)

Tip of the Hat to Email Tide, TechCrunch.

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